Official Opening of Online Abstinence Resource Directory
Education in Massive US AIDS Program
Congressmen Want Planned Parenthood De-Funded Over Web Site Porn
Jonas Brothers Wear Purity Rings
Living Together: The Myths, Risks, and Answers
"One who is unable to live without sex, in the end, becomes a slave"
American Idol: Who's the Real Man?
NEW! This Should Give Us Pause: Porn Producer Compliments Planned Parenthood and its Website for Teens
NEW (sort of)! Study finds 1 in 4 (3.2 Million) US teens has a STD / This is Really OLD News
Failure of the Condom Culture
The Condom As A "Statement" (Does this make the condom stop STDs any better?)
The Cost of Cohabitation
NEW! Teen Sex Linked To Regret and Abortions in Adult Life
NEW! Abstinence Supporters Seize the Day!
NEW! Two New Studies: Sexual Integrity Programs Help Reduce Teen Pregnancy
NEW! Continued Good News on Teen Pregnancy and Abortion
Helping Teens Find Chaste Support — Chased but Chaste!…
OFFICIAL OPENING OF ONLINE DIRECTORY OF ABSTINENCE RESOURCES!
Contact the Abstinence Clearinghouse at 605.335.3643 or [email protected]
EDUCATION IN MASSIVE US AIDS PROGRAM: PEPFAR program extended and budget tripled to $10 billion annually for next five years. Pro-family forces in the U.S. House of Representatives hammered out an agreement on 27Feb08 to maintain abstinence education programs in a bill to extend President Bush's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), which has been credited with effectively reducing the rate of HIV transmission in Africa during its five year existence.
Programs that prioritize abstinence education have been very successful in Africa, in one case reducing teen pregnancy by 61 percent. In Uganda, where such programs have been used for years, HIV infection rates have fallen from 15% to under 5%.
The new bill extends the PEPFAR program beyond its previous expiration date set for this year, and more than triples its budget, increasing it to $10 billion annually for the next five years, and requires a "balanced" approach that includes teaching abstinence, marital fidelity, monogamy, delaying sexual debut, and reducing numbers of sexual partners.
The original PEPFAR was controversial among social liberals because it required that one third of the money be spent on programs that teach abstinence as the most effective way to avoid HIV and AIDS.
In the current bill, House Democrats attempted to remove abstinence education requirements and restrictions that disallow funding for groups involved in prostitution. The compromise bill eliminates those changes.
The new PEPFAR drops the one-third funding requirement for abstinence-only programs, and substitutes this requirement with a more general one that states that program coordinators will provide "balanced funding for activities for sexual transmission of HIV/AIDS and shall ensure that behavior change programs, including abstinence, delay of sexual debut, monogamy, fidelity and partner reduction, are implemented and funded in a meaningful and equitable way in the strategy for each host country."
If a coordinator waives the requirement, by spending less than 50 percent of funds to promote abstinence approaches, he must issue a special report to Congress explaining why. Under the previous PEPFAR regime the one-third abstience funding requirement was sometimes waived, but no report was required.
Opponents of abstinence education were happy with the huge increase in funding for the international AIDS establishement, which is largely devoted to condom distribution and "sexual education" that tends to legitimize extramarital sexual relations. However, they were discouraged by the fact that a portion of the funding would continue to go to abstinence education.
Scott Swenson, writing for the liberal, pro-abortion website "Reproductive Health Reality Check" called the abstinence education provisions "bad news" and wrote, "The abstinence earmark is gone, but the tone set by the new requirement is easily misinterpreted by the time these restrictions get to the field level, especially on the heels of the abstinence-only earmark under which these providers have been working."
Although Swensen claims that there is no evidence to show the effectiveness of abstinence-only programs, Rep. Chris Smith in a recent house floor speech quoted a joint statement by the U.S. Department of State, USAID, and Health and Human Resources, who said that "Congressional directives have helped focus U.S. Government (USG) prevention strategies to be evidence-based. Because of the data, ABC is now recognized as the most effective strategy to prevent HIV in generalized epidemics." "ABC" stands for "Abstinence, Be Faithful, use a Condom", prioritizing the first two options.
Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council said that the legislation was "not perfect" but seemed tentatively satisfied with the results. "I applaud the House Foreign Affairs Committee for passing an HIV/AIDS bill free of troubling provisions contained in earlier drafts. Previous drafts w
ould have funded international abortion groups, undermined abstinence and faithfulness programs, removed an anti-sex trafficking provision, harmed faith-based groups and would have done nothing to require transparency in the Global Fund. This bill is a marked improvement and is aimed at protecting life, not destroying it."
Related: Abstinence Program Making Huge Impact in Africa: 61 Percent Reduction in Teen Pregnancy
New U.S. Government Health Department Study Confirms Abstinence Education Effective
Ugandan Anti-AIDS Activist Demands UN Fire Lewis For Pushing Condoms
[28Feb08, Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, LifeSiteNews.com]
CONGRESSMEN WANT PLANNED PARENTHOOD DE-FUNDED OVER WEB SITE PORN. Pro-life members of Congress say the federal government should stop funding Planned Parenthood through national family programs because its teen-oriented web site features pornography.
Planned Parenthood's online site features content so graphic that some Internet filters are preventing access to it. The site is supposed to be a compendium of "medically accurate" information for teenagers on sexual issues.
Though Planned Parenthood is careful to say the information is intended for people 18 years and older, the web site is clearly geared to teens. The web site's "advice columnists" tell kids viewing the web site that many people use pornography as part of sex play."
A columnist tells one viewer that viewing pornography won't lead to getting bad grades in school. The web site encourages kids to play sexual games or explore bisexuality and it gives teens advice on how to avoid telling their parents about a possible abortion. [29Feb08, DC LifeNews.com]
JONAS BROTHERS WEAR PURITY RINGS. Tweens love ‘em, and their parents would love this about them: the Jonas Brothers (TJB) wear purity rings that reflect their personal style but symbolize their commitment to the same goal, abstinence til marriage. At twenty, eighteen, and fifteen-years-old, the brothers write and perform their own music in venues around the country.
[25Feb08, “Jonas Brothers Reveal Purity Pledge,” Fametastic, http://fametastic.co.uk/archive/20080225/9965/jonas-brothers-reveal-purity-pledge; Abstinence Clearinghouse]
LIVING TOGETHER: MYTHS, RISKS, AND ANSWERS
Mike and Harriet McManus, Co-Founders of Marriage Savers, have written a new book, Living Together: Myths, Risks & Answers, that will be published March 4 by Howard Books. Chuck Colson wrote the foreword, saying: “Their book is designed for pastors, parents and married mentors who are confronted with couples who think they'll be the glorious exception to the cohabitation statistics.”
George Gallup also endorsed Living Together: “Mike and Harriet McManus are doing their level best to alert Americans to the fact that cohabitation increases rather than decreases the likelihood of divorce. The authors, who have devoted their lives to the cause of marriage, have written a well-researched and practical book. It deserves close attention by young people and their parents, and by the Church, which has been largely silent on the matter.”
[FEB 26, 2008, By Mike and Harriet McManus; http://www.marriagesavers.org/sitems/Resources/Publications/LivingTogetherMythRisksAnswers.htm]
PROJECT REALITY IS OFFERING FREE ONLINE TRAINING for abstinence education programs for grades 7-12! To view a course demonstration, visit www.abstinencetraining.com. To participate, call 239-659-1095 or email [email protected] to find out if you are eligible for this free training session ($169 value)!
"ONE WHO IS UNABLE TO LIVE WITHOUT SEX, IN THE END, BECOMES A SLAVE": Italian Soccer Superstar. In an interview for the Italian magazine Sportsweek, a star defender from Turin, Italy's Juventus soccer club, Nicola Legrottaglie, revealed that two years ago he made the decision to abstain from pre-marital sex.
Legrottaglie said, "I have not had sex in two years and honestly, it has not been a burden." The soccer player spoke candidly about his past exploits, saying that if he did not make a conquest every few days, "I panicked." Reflecting on that experience now, he said: "One who is unable to live without sex, in the end, becomes a slave."
The Juventus star told Sportsweek that he has chosen abstinence "not because I do not like women, but because I am waiting for the right woman with whom to have a family, a woman who shares the same values."
Legrottaglie's remarks are reminiscent of a June, 2007 incident, when a Brazilian soccer superstar responded in Vanity Fair to comments by a Brazilian supermodel.
"Today no one is a virgin when they get married … show me someone who's a virgin!" said supermodel Gisele Bundchen at the time. "How is it possible to not want people to use condoms and also not have abortions? It's impossible, I'm sorry."
However, Brazilian soccer superstar Ricardo Izecson Santos Leite responded to Bundchen's outburst, saying that both he and his wife, Caroline, were virgins when they got married. Ricardo, one of Brazil’s most successful soccer players, has long been known for both his outspoken faith and his remarkable good looks.
“True love waits until marriage," Ricardo told “Vanity Fair”, saying about his marriage, “If our life today is so beautiful, I think it is because we waited."
The time prior to his and his wife’s marriage, during which they conducted a chaste relationship, says Ricardo, "was important, as it tested our love." The soccer star admitted that it was not easy to stay a virgin until his wedding night, and that even still there are difficulties in living faithfully, saying that “there are always temptations.” But he also says that the sacrifices that he and his wife made for each other have been more than worth it.
Related coverage: Brazilian Soccer Heartthrob’s Response to Supermodel’s Anti-Catholic Outburst: I Was a Virgin When I Got Married
[30Jan2008, Turin, CWNews.com/LifeSiteNews.com]
AMERICAN IDOL: WHO’S THE “REAL MAN”? At the Dallas tryouts for the popular American Idol show, 19-year-old Bruce Dickson answered the judges’ request for a bit of personal info by volunteering that he is planning to save his first kiss for his wife. Not cool. At least not according to Randy Jackson who asked incredulously, “On purpose?” As he closed out the segment, host Ryan Seacrest jabbed, “"Maybe next year he'll come back less a boy and more a man."
Bruce was not intimidated. In an interview following the filming, the former high school athlete and homecoming king shot back, &
ldquo;"A real man would rather wait than just do whatever with whoever.”
[23Jan08, Abstinence Clearinghouse, http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewCulture.asp?Page=/Culture/archive/200801/CUL20080121b.html]
PORN PRODUCER COMPLIMENTS PLANNED PARENTHOOD & ITS WEBSITE FOR TEENS
[ED. NOTE: The article below may be objectionable due to the comments of people in the porn industry. If anyone has doubts about the agenda of Planned Parenthood, or about the pornographic nature of Planned Parenthood's website images for teens, this should make it clear beyond any shadow of doubt. Where is the outcry? Why is this website being allowed to function when it is blatantly promoting pornography to teenagers?]
Porn-maker praises Planned Parenthood's teen web site. David Mech, or David Pounder as he's known in pornography circles, said that Planned Parenthood's Web site for teens is an "excellent source for young people to learn about" what he considers "the benefits of viewing pornography". Mech contacted Cybercast News Service after reading its report about the website.
"Planned Parenthood is an excellent organization that helps people by focusing on how people actually are behaving (i.e., having sex, watching porn, doing drugs, etc.), as opposed to helping people based on how they should be behaving (abstaining from sex, watching the news, eating healthy, etc.)," Mech, a pornography producer and actor, told Cybercast News Service.
"Men in their teens are accessing porn, and I think it's a normal thing," he said.
Mech, who said he was first exposed to pornography at 13 or 14 through a friend, agrees with Planned Parenthood's approach of promoting pornography "as an alternative to having sex," especially if Teenwire.com's advice on "outercourse" helps reduce sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies.
He added that in today's society, where young people are encouraged to earn a college degree before marriage, Teenwire.com is providing content, including tips on viewing pornography that modern teens need.
"It used to be that people got married at 13 or 14 years old," Mech said. "It's unrealistic (today) to expect people not to have sex before marriage."
That's why, Mech said, sex education shouldn't rely on an abstinence-only approach.
"I think teens are going to have sex regardless," Mech said. "Comprehensive sex education is the way to go, and if pornography is included as part of the program, that's okay.
"Planned Parenthood is doing an exceptional job," Mech said.
John Haney, psychotherapist with Crossroads Counseling and Associates in Austin, Texas, has worked with many teens and adults who have compulsive sexual disorders. He disagrees with Mech that viewing pornography is a good way to learn about human sexuality.
"It's normal for (teenage) boys to have an interest in sex, but it's not healthy for them to explore it that way," Haney told Cybercast News Service. "I think if a teen is turning to pornography to get information about sexuality, they are going to get a distorted and incomplete view."
Distorted, he said, because most pornography depicts male domination and women as sexual objects rather than human beings, and incomplete, because sexual acts aren't put into perspective.
"(Pornography) completely neglects the emotional aspects of intimacy," Haney said. "There is more to sex than the physical aspect."
He added that viewing pornography also give teens – especially young girls – an unrealistic and even destructive way of viewing themselves and their sexuality.
Mech claims that even if pornography is still a taboo in today's society, it is accepted as mainstream – and harmless – by most people.
"For every one person addicted to pornography there are a thousand people who view pornography responsibly," Mech told Cybercast News Service.
Haney said teens should be taught that sex is a normal and a "God-given" fact of life, but that responding to their interest in the topic requires more than relying on the kind of advice found on Teenwire.com. For instance, the Teenwire Web site includes the following:
"There are a few things you should know about the images you might see. First of all, many people enjoy pornography alone or with a partner as part of sex play. People have different ideas of what is arousing, and there are many different kinds of porn that appeal to people's different interests."
"Curiosity about sex is normal," Haney said. "And we shouldn't shame kids about an interest in sex, but I don't think pornography is the way to educate them." [13March08, CNSNews.com, Penny Starr,
STUDY FINDS 1 IN 4 USA TEENS HAS A STD [nothing new]. At least one in four teenage American girls has a sexually transmitted disease, suggests a first-of-its-kind federal study that startled some adolescent-health experts.
Some doctors said the numbers might be a reflection of both abstinence-only sex education and teens' own sense of invulnerability. Because some sexually transmitted infections can cause infertility and cancer, U.S. health officials called for better screening, vaccination and prevention.
Only about half of the girls in the study acknowledged having sex. Some teens define sex as only intercourse, yet other types of intimate behavior including oral sex can spread some diseases.
Among those who admitted having sex, the rate was even more disturbing — 40 percent had an STD.
"This is pretty shocking," said Dr. Elizabeth Alderman, an adolescent medicine specialist at Montefiore Medical Center's Children's Hospital in New York.
"To talk about abstinence is not a bad thing," but teen girls — and boys too — need to be informed about how to protect themselves if they do have sex, Alderman said.
The overall STD rate among the 838 girls in the study was 26 percent, which translates to more than 3 million girls nationwide, researchers with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found. They released the results Tuesday at an STD prevention conference in Chicago.
"Those numbers are certainly alarming," said sex education expert Nora Gelperin, who works with a teen-written Web site called sexetc.org. She said they reflect "the sad state of sex education in our country."
"Sexuality is still a very taboo subject in our society," she said. "Teens tell us that they can't make decisions in the dark and that adults aren't properly preparing them to make responsible decisions."
Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said the study shows that "the national policy of promoting abstinence-only programs is a $1.5 billion failure, and teenage girls are paying the real price."
Similar claims were made last year when the government announced the teen birth rate rose between
2005 and 2006, the first increase in 15 years.
The new study by CDC researcher Dr. Sara Forhan relied on slightly older data. It is an analysis of nationally representative records on girls ages 14 to 19 who participated in a 2003-04 government health survey.
The teens were tested for four infections: human papillomavirus, or HPV, which can cause cervical cancer and affected 18 percent of girls studied; chlamydia, which affected 4 percent; trichomoniasis, 2.5 percent; and genital herpes, 2 percent.
Dr. John Douglas, director of the CDC's division of STD prevention, said the results are the first to examine the combined national prevalence of common sexually transmitted diseases among adolescent girls. He said the data, now a few years old, likely reflect current prevalence rates.
Disease rates were significantly higher among black girls — nearly half had at least one STD, versus 20 percent among both whites and Mexican-Americans.
HPV, the cancer-causing virus, can also cause genital warts but often has no symptoms. A vaccine targeting several HPV strains recently became available, but Douglas said it probably hasn't yet had much impact on HPV prevalence rates in teen girls.
The CDC recommends the three-dose HPV vaccine for girls ages 11-12 and catch-up shots for ages 13-26.
Chlamydia, which often has no symptoms but can lead to infertility, can be treated with antibiotics. The CDC recommends annual chlamydia screening for all sexually active women under age 25. Trichomoniasis, also treatable with antibiotics, can cause abnormal discharge and painful urination. Genital herpes can cause blisters but often has no symptoms. It's not curable but medicine can help.
The CDC's Dr. Kevin Fenton said given the dangers of some STDs, "screening, vaccination and other prevention strategies for sexually active women are among our highest public health priorities."
Douglas said screening tests are underused in part because many teens don't think they're at risk, but also, some doctors mistakenly think: "Sexually transmitted diseases don't happen to the kinds of patients I see."
Teens need to hear the dual message that STDs can be prevented by abstinence and condoms, said Dr. Ellen Kruger, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans.
"You've got to hammer at them," with appropriate information at each stage of teen development to make sure it sinks in, she said.
She said there are a lot of myths out there, too — many sexually active teens think the withdrawal method will protect them, or that douching with Coca-Cola will kill STD germs.
Dr. Margaret Blythe, an adolescent medicine specialist at Indiana University School of Medicine, said some doctors hesitate to discuss STDs with teen patients or offer screening because of confidentiality concerns, knowing parents would have to be told of the results.
Blythe, who heads an American Academy of Pediatrics committee on adolescence, noted that the academy supports confidential teen screening.
American Academy of Pediatrics: http://www.aap.org
[Comment: This finding should show why chastity education is essential for teens; but instead the medical sexperts say rampant STDs show teens need more "comprehensive" sex ed, contraception, etc., that abstinence education somehow "causes" the problem (??), and that parents need to be kept in the dark. N. Valko RN/ed.]
[Lindsey Tanner, AP, http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080311/ap_on_he_me/teen_stds
FOR 10 YEARS ABSTINENCE EDUCATION PROGRAMS HAVE BEEN TEACHING THAT 1 IN 4 SEXUALLY ACTIVE TEENS HAVE AN STD
Project Reality's CEO, Kathleen Sullivan, while commenting on the "New Study" from the Center for Disease Control, called attention to the fact that Project Reality's Game Plan text covers that very statistic. "In fact, on page 33 of the book, the headline 'STD's Increasing Among Teens'specifically states that '1 in 4 teens who are sexually active get an STD.' This statistic goes as far back as 1994."
Mrs. Sullivan challenged all the Abstinence Education Programs to ask the serious question, "Why is this regurgitation of old figures suppose to suddenly make news? Please note that all the accounts are accompanied by references and calls for Abstinence funding to be halted. Isn't that amazing! Could it be that young people choosing Abstinence is in fact financially hurting the providers of services such as contraception."
Questions to Ask:
* Were the 838 girls interviewed the total, and half were sexually active with 26% (of half 416) having an STD?
* Or were the 838 interviewed the half?
* Why were no young men interviewed?
* How many of the interviewed were 18 or 19 years old and how could they be considered "adolescents"?
"It would be interesting to investigate Dr. Sara Forhan, OB/GYN of Greensboro, NC and how much money she received in citizens tax dollars to conduct this study. It would be even more interesting to find out if she was subsidized by the manufacturers of Gardasil!"
Project Reality, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, has been a pioneer in the national field of adolescent health education for more than 20 years. In its home state of Illinois, Project Reality has received state funding since 1987, and has served more than 120,000 students in each of the past four years with the message of abstinence as the healthiest choice and has proven by evaluation that abstinence and character education work. Project Reality is committed to effectively communicating to students the benefits of abstinence until marriage and receives strong support from parents, teachers and students alike.
[ http://www.projectreality.org; 14Mar08, National Abstinence Clearinghouse, www.abstinence.net ]
FAILURE OF THE CONDOM CULTURE. On 11March08, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) National STD Prevention conference presented research showing that 1 in 4 teen girls (or 3.2 million) have a sexually transmitted infection (STI).
In addition, findings from two studies presented demonstrate that of the 15-to-24-year-old women receiving contraceptives, over half are not receiving appropriate counseling, screening, and treatment for STIs.
Taken together, these findings represent a simmering STD epidemic among our young people and a tremendous negligence in care for girls most at risk for contracting STDs. The call for an effective public health prevention strategy could not be more urgent.
The current contraceptive-based education approach offered in 75 percent of U.S. schools not only relies on an overly narrow focus on physical health that is spurring an epidemic, but it also completely ignores the emotional consequences of premarital sex.
Abstinence education is increasingly providing an efficacious and holistic approach to protect our young people's current and future health. While the proponents of comprehensive or contraceptive-based sex education and much of the medical and public health community continue to pay lip service to prevention for our young people, these CDC results offer fresh evidence that the focus is on facilitating high-risk behavior rather than true primary and even secondary prevention.
The risk-avoidance or sexual abstinence-until-marriage strategy must be adopted to reverse the STD epidemic. It's an evidence-based approach with proven results for revers
ing the HIV/AIDS trends in several African countries–let's give it a chance in this country. [12March08, FRC, http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=WU08C07]
[ed. Parents have a responsibility to check into the sex education programs available in their schools. Many of these programs undermine and oppose parental training and expectations for their children.]
Sex Infections Found in Quarter of Teenage Girls. The first national study of four common sexually transmitted diseases among girls and young women has found that one in four are infected with at least one of the diseases, federal health officials reported 11March08.
Nearly half the African-Americans in the study of teenagers ages 14 to 19 were infected with at least one of the diseases monitored in the study — human papillomavirus (HPV), chlamydia, genital herpes and trichomoniasis, a common parasite.
The 50 percent figure compared with 20 percent of white teenagers, health officials and researchers said at a news conference at a scientific meeting in Chicago.
The two most common sexually transmitted diseases, or S.T.D.’s, among all the participants tested were HPV, at 18 percent, and chlamydia, at 4 percent, according to the analysis, part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
Each disease can be serious in its own way. HPV, for example, can cause cancer and genital warts.
Among the infected women, 15 percent had more than one of the diseases.
Women may be unaware they are infected. But the diseases, which are infections caused by bacteria, viruses and parasites, can produce acute symptoms like irritating vaginal discharge, painful pelvic inflammatory disease and potentially fatal ectopic pregnancy. The infections can also lead to longterm ailments like infertility and cervical cancer.
The survey tested for specific HPV strains linked to genital warts and cervical cancer.
Officials of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the findings underscored the need to strengthen screening, vaccination and other prevention measures for the diseases, which are among the highest public health priorities.
About 19 million new sexually transmitted infections occur each year among all age groups in the United States.
“High S.T.D. infection rates among young women, particularly young African-American women, are clear signs that we must continue developing ways to reach those most at risk,” said Dr. John M. Douglas Jr., who directs the centers’ division of S.T.D. prevention.
The president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Cecile Richards, said the new findings “emphasize the need for real comprehensive sex education.”
“The national policy of promoting abstinence-only programs is a $1.5 billion failure,” Ms. Richards said, “and teenage girls are paying the real price.”
Although earlier annual surveys have tested for a single sexually transmitted disease in a specified population, this is the first time the national study has collected data on all the most common sexual diseases in adolescent women at the same time. It is also the first time the study measured human papillomavirus.
Dr. Douglas said that because the new survey was based on direct testing, it was more reliable than analyses derived from data that doctors and clinics sent to the diseases center through state and local health departments.
“What we found is alarming,” said Dr. Sara Forhan, a researcher at the centers and the lead author of the study.
Dr. Forhan added that the study showed “how fast the S.T.D. prevalence appears.”
“Far too many young women are at risk for the serious health effects of untreated S.T.D.’s, ” she said.
The centers conducts the annual study, which asks a representative sample of the household population a wide range of health questions. The analysis was based on information collected in the 2003-4 survey.
Extrapolating from the findings, Dr. Forhan said 3.2 million teenage women were infected with at least one of the four diseases.
The 838 participants in the study were chosen at random with standard statistical techniques. Of the women asked, 96 percent agreed to submit vaginal swabs for testing.
The findings and specific treatment recommendations were available to the participants calling a password-protected telephone line. Three reminders were sent to participants who did not call.
Health officials recommend treatment for all sex partners of individuals diagnosed with curable sexually transmitted diseases. One promising approach to reach that goal is for doctors who treat infected women to provide or prescribe the same treatment for their partners, Dr. Douglas said. The goal is to encourage men who may not have a physician or who have no symptoms and may be reluctant to seek care to be treated without a doctor’s visit.
He also urged infected women to be retested three months after treatment to detect possible reinfection and to treat it.
Dr. Forhan said she did not know how many participants received their test results.
Federal health officials recommend annual screening tests to detect chlamydia for sexually active women younger than 25. The disease agency also recommends that women ages 11 to 26 be fully vaccinated against HPV.
The Food and Drug Administration has said in a report that latex condoms are “highly effective” at preventing infection by chlamydia, trichomoniasis, H.I.V., gonorrhea and hepatitis B.
The agency noted that condoms seemed less effective against genital herpes and syphilis. Protection against human papillomavirus “is partial at best,” the report said. [12March 2008, Lawrence Altman, New York Times, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/12/science/12std.html?_r=1&ref=research&oref=slogin]
THE CONDOM AS A 'STATEMENT' — DO THEY FUNCTION BETTER THIS WAY? Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) is hailing the release of its new condom line, which it claims makes both a "fashion statement" and a "lifestyle statement." PPFA says the condom is "stylish" and a 'must-have' fashion accessory." The condom package itself is even described as "chic."
"On the heels of a Centers for Disease Control report stating that some three millions teenage girls in the United States has a sexually transmitted disease, Planned Parenthood is rolling out its new line of condoms," said Douglas R. Scott, Jr., president of Life Decisions International (LDI). "But rather than its usual promotion of so-called 'safer sex,' the pro-abortion group is using basic Madison Avenue techniques to encourage sales."
According to Planned Parenthood, its Proper Attire line was designed to "encourage women to feel more comfortable about carrying and buying condoms." PPFA President Cecile Richards explained: "Social taboos make some women embarrassed to buy and carry condoms. That's why Proper Attire was created. With its fashionable wrapping, women will now have the option to choose the right 'attire' for that special occasion. Responsible decisions about sex are everybody's personal fashion statement."
Available in four "fashionable styles," Proper Attire condoms are sold at boutique shops, exclusive hotels, Planned Parenthood centers, and online. The suggested retail
price of a three-pack is $6.00, with proceeds supporting PPFA.
The queen of double entendre, especially when sex is involved, PPFA's slogan for the Proper Attire condom is "Required for Entry." Read together the phrase is, "Proper Attire: Required for Entry." PPFA's website address and toll-free phone number are imprinted on each condom.
"Once again, Planned Parenthood is demonstrating the outrageousness of its philosophy and world view," Scott said. "They see absolutely nothing wrong with what they are doing or they manner in which they are doing it."
"When we decided to create a new condom line, we knew that we wanted to make it cool for women to carry condoms," said Rachel Molloy, formerly of rapidly pro-abortion Marie Stopes International and now brand director for Proper Attire. "Every element of the brand has been inspired by the world of fashion, from the Proper Attire brand name, and the chic packaging created by designers, to the fig leaf logo showcasing clothing in its most primitive form."
"Old stereotypes about who should buy condoms are so last season!" reads advertising for the new condom line. "Proper Attire condoms are the 'must-have' accessory this season and were designed with sexually active, stylish women in mind." A variation of the statement is also used. "With Proper Attire as the new 'must-have' of the season, insist on a dress code. Proper Attire…it is required for entry."
"This kind of marketing ploy should surprise no one," Scott said. "Planned Parenthood has always been about destroying traditional ways of thinking and behaving–primarily for its own gain."
In 2005, Consumer Reports evaluated 23 kinds of latex condoms. In the study, PPFA's lollipop-flavored condom ranked fourteenth. Its assorted colors condoms placed twenty-second. And the abortion-committing behemoth's honeydew-flavored condoms ranked dead last. Given its history of failure in this area, PPFA was sure to provide a statement regarding safety and effectiveness: "Reliable and effective, Proper Attire condoms are not only FDA-tested, but undergo rigorous quality assurance testing by the manufacturer as well as by independent laboratories."
But this is essentially the same "promise" Planned Parenthood made about the condoms tested by Consumer Reports.
"This is Planned Parenthood's most recent attempt at setting young people up for a fall," Scott said. "Planned Parenthood's customers will either become 'fashionable' or they will die trying." [14March08, Life Decisions International, http://www.fightpp.org/show.cfm?page=press&action=display&ID=139]
Group Hands Out PP Condoms On Beach, At Bars. [Please Note the article above.] College-age members of Planned Parenthood were not shy last week as they handed out free condoms and showed spring breakers how to use them.
The students combed beaches, worked clubs and bars encouraging their counterparts to practice safe sex. On a recent outing, as earsplitting music played in the background, Natalie Muniz, the education director of Planned Parenthood of North Central Florida, demonstrated the correct way to open a condom package — look for the air bubble and don’t use your teeth — and what condom users should immediately look for, the expiration date.
Some spring breakers took the packages and shared knowing smiles and high-fives; others, most noticeably several groups of women, politely declined the prophylactics and walked away.
The brand of condom Muniz and her University of Florida students were offering is called “Proper Attire.” The new brand is designed to appeal to women as a fashion accessory, Muniz said. The brand uses the tag line “Required for entry.”
“We don’t think guys should have all the fun,” said Becca Guerra, a student and a member of Planned Parenthood. “We should be in charge of our own sexual health.”
After spending time with spring breakers, the group headed to Tallahassee to try to convince legislators to change the way sex education is offered in Florida schools. Planned Parenthood wants a comprehensive sex education course that does more than teach abstinence.
To promote its cause, the group points out that Florida ranks sixth in the nation in teen pregnancy and seventh in teen abortion. Florida has 40 abortions for every 100 pregnancies, according to information provided by Planned Parenthood. [17March2008, Florida Freedom Newspapers, Panama City Beach, http://www.nwfdailynews.com/article/12883]
THE COST OF COHABITATION. Mike and Harriet McManus present their new book, Living Together: Myths, Risks & Answers. In today's culture, the fact that more than five million couples are living together outside of marriage doesn't come as a shock to many. It should. Studies show that the mere act of cohabiting before marriage increases a couple's chance of divorcing by 50 percent. Yet 62 percent of couples who married in 2002 had previously lived together. The McManuses are playing a key part in the restoration of marriage in America. They have teamed up with more than 10,000 clergy in 200 cities to establish Community Marriage Policies. An independent study reports that in their first 122 communities, divorce rates fell 17.5 percent in seven years, with some plunging 50 percent. Also, cohabitation rates dropped by a third and marriage rates are rising as a result in these locales. Mike and Harriet are not only passionate, they are effective. If you are able to attend this event in person, please call us toll-free at 1-800-225-4008 or RSVP via the web at www.frc.org. The lecture will also be webcast live at www.frc.org. [17Mar08, FRC]
TEEN SEX LINKED TO REGRET AND ABORTIONS IN LATER ADULT LIFE. Girls who become sexually active before age 17 are almost 70 percent more likely to experience a crisis pregnancy in later life and three times more likely to procure abortion in their lifetime than those who wait until they are older, according to a study released by the Irish Crisis Pregnancy Agency.
The Irish Study of Sexual Health and Relationships, the largest nationally representative study on sexual knowledge, attitudes and behaviour ever undertaken in Ireland, was published by the Department of Health and the Crisis Pregnancy Agency (CPA) today.
The research found that 14.9 per cent of men and 7.9 per cent of women first engaged in sex when they were less than 16 years old. A majority of the women in that group (59 percent) and more than a third of the men (37 percent) regretted it.
The study states, "Lower age of first sex is strongly associated with regret at the timing of first sex, among both men and women."
"According to research, the majority of young people wait until they are 17 or older to have sex for the first time," said the CPA's chairperson Katharine Bulbulia.
"However, for those who have had sex before 17, the research shows the impact of early first sex on the individual's later sexual health, and suggests that some young people…are having first sex at a time that is not right for them.
"We need to equip young people with the knowledge and skills they need to delay their first sexual experience."
The report explained that the average age of fir
st sexual encounter for both men and women has steadily declined over the last half century. "Most people now in their 20s will have had their first sexual experience before they were 18." The study found that the current median age of first sexual intercourse is 18 for men and 19 for women. The median age for men currently aged 60 to 64 is 22; for women, 23. For men and women currently under 25, it is 17.
The survey of more than 7,400 men and women, found early school dropouts were more likely to lose their virginity as young teenagers than those who stayed in school and completed their education.
The study also found that, for people under 30, 38 percent of men and around 20 percent of women said they were under the influence of alcohol or drugs when they lost their virginity.
The study recommended, "Parents need to be acknowledged as the primary relationships and sexuality educators of their children, and to be supported in that role. They need supports provided through a range of initiatives. These supports should particularly address the needs of parents who most need assistance, such as those in lower socio-economic groups."
The study also stated, "Health promotion strategies need to foster more responsible public behaviour concerning the use of alcohol and illicit drugs, given their role in sexual encounters." [11April08, T.M. Baklinski, Dublin, LifeSiteNews.com, http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2008/apr/08041104.html]
ABSTINENCE SUPPORTERS SEIZE THE DAY. In February 2008, FRC helped to host Abstinence Day on the Hill, where students and teachers came to D.C. to educate members and their staff about the benefits of abstinence programs.
Now, [anti-abstinence] proponents of teen "safe" sex are mustering their forces–led by House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) — to gut abstinence programs.
This Wednesday [23April08] Waxman is holding a hearing in his committee that is clearly a sham. Waxman is inviting seven witnesses to testify against abstinence education, but only two in favor!
Indeed, some of those testifying against abstinence education support "comprehensive sex-education" programs, which often teach young teens to engage in highly risky sexual behaviors and fail to provide information on condom failure.
"During his time in Congress, Waxman has been a darling of the National and Reproductive Rights Action League. He has voted:
**Against the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act, a bill to prevent minors from being taken across state lines for clandestine abortions that would have required parental notice in their home states
**Yes on spending your tax dollars for embryo-killing research and to preserve the legality of cloning
**Against a ban on the heinous practice of partial-birth abortion, used to kill mid- and late-term babies through a procedure that partially delivers them only to have their skulls crushed and their brains removed by suction
**Against "Laci and Conner's Law," a measure that made it a criminal offense to kill an unborn child during the commission of a violent crime against the child's mother
"With a record like this, it's no wonder that Henry Waxman is walking point for Planned Parenthood in its effort to end funding that helps young people protect their sexuality and their health through abstinence. It's also no wonder that Planned Parenthood wants to keep and win even more support for its drive to merge abortion and family planning programs under one roof, with taxpayer support."
[Family Research Council, 22Apr08]
Waxman's witnesses support children's sexual and reproductive health services without parental consent, the use of emergency contraceptives over-the-counter, and the radical view that abstinence violates human rights.
His target is the Community Based Abstinence Program and the Title V abstinence state grant program. The hearing could also undermine other abstinence programs. FRC is working hard to protect abstinence education on all fronts. "Please urge members of the committee to support abstinence education programs (http://www.frc.org/contact-elected-officials)".
Related: Spending Too Little on Abstinence By Tony Perkins and Moira Gaul, MPH — http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=PV07E01
[21Apr08, Family Research Council Action; http://www.lifenews.com/nat3875.html]
UNBALANCED ABSTINENCE EDUCATION HEARING CONCLUDES. In the face of mounting evidence supporting the efficacy of abstinence-until-marriage programs, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing today on abstinence education presenting a distorted view of abstinence programs but advocates for abstinence like Senator Brownback and Stan Weed did a fantastic job of presenting the success of abstinence programs.
Chairman Waxman’s hearing assembled a panel of witnesses who, for the most part, opposed abstinence education. They downplayed and distorted the positive effects of abstinence-until-marriage programs.
Leslee Unruh, President and Founder of the Abstinence Clearinghouse, was present at the hearing. She said, "The greatest failure of this committee was not allowing those that were being talked about – the teens themselves – the opportunity to share how and why abstinence programs have worked for them. I saw abstinent young adults in the audience appearing frustrated saying they wish they could share their opinion on this matter." Unfortunately, a fair view of the legitimacy and effectiveness of abstinence programs was lacking with the absence of views from parents, educators, and students who support abstinence.
Leslee goes on to say, however, "It could have been worse. Stan Weed and Senator Brownback, along with a handful of others, represented abstinence very well." Please make it a point to thank them for being a voice for the abstinence community and representing us well.
The Abstinence Clearinghouse will be posting a full transript of today's hearing as soon as possible. Visit the website and blog for updates. We will pass them along as they come. [WASHINGTON, APRIL 23, 2008, abstinence.net, NAC]
STUDIES: SEXUAL INTEGRITY PROGRAMS HELP REDUCE TEEN PREGNANCY. While there is much debate over the efficacy of abstinence-until-marriage programs, the evidence in favor of these programs continues to mount.
“While these findings show valuable evidence that abstinence-until-marriage programs work, the best evidence is found in hearing the success stories from the kids living the life of sexual integrity everyday,” says Leslee Unruh, President and Founder of the National Abstinence Clearinghouse, the world’s largest abstinence organization.
“Abstinence-until-marriage allows youth the freedom to pursue their dreams and goals without the fear of an unplanned pregnancy, the danger of a sexually transmitted disease or the pain of a broken heart; and it allows them time to find true intimacy, not false intimacy,” she said.
Today, researchers at the National Press Club presented two new studies that highlight encouraging findings on abstinence education.
The first study, conducted by Dr. Stan Weed of the Institute of Research and Evaluation, assessed the effectiveness of abstinence education in reducing the sexual activity of students in Virginia middle schools. According to Dr. Stan Weed, the evaluation shows that abstinence education programs cut the rate of sexual activity among students roughly in half.
The second paper, by Christine Kim and Robert Rector of The Heritage Foundation, presented a comprehensive review of 21 prior studies of the effectiveness of abstinence and virginity pledge programs. According to Christine Kim, 16 out of 21 studies of abstinence education found youth who received abstinence education had lower rates of sexual activity when compared to youth who did not receive abstinence training.
Most parents are shocked to learn that opponents of abstinence education who promote condoms and contraceptives to youth out-funding abstinence-until-marriage programs by a rate of nearly $12 to $1.
Yet, contraceptive programs continue to be funded with little oversight or peer reviewed evaluations to demonstrate their effectiveness. “I challenge contraceptive programs to conduct the same rigorous studies of their programs as abstinence programs do” said Leslee Unruh.
Further, she said, “Abstinence programs set a clear standard for youth while contraceptive programs ridicule abstinent teens and lower the bar for all teens. It’s like an anti-drug campaign going into the school and saying, ‘Well, doing drugs is bad but here’s a clean needle, a little bit to get you started and here’s where you can go when you run out of drugs and your parents will never need to know.’ Kids don’t respond positively to a mixed message!”
Abstinence-until-marriage education, when taught according to the Title V A-H definition, offers youth a clear standard and expectation for behavior, a definition and picture of what a healthy relationship looks like, the training to make positive decisions in spite of the peer pressure, education and information about how other risk behaviors like drinking and drugs affect their decision making process and the freedom to focus on healthy and positive goals in their lives.
“Opponents of abstinence education seek to create ‘abstiphobics’ out of policy makers and parents by disregarding the evidence that abstinence works. However, they can no longer disregard the youth whose lives are changing daily because of the sexual integrity that abstinence-until-marriage education creates,” said Leslee Unruh.
Click here to read a press statement released by The Heritage Foundation.
Click here to read the paper written by the Heritage Foundation.
Click here to view a chart illustrating that teens who wait to become sexually active stay in school longer.
[22April08, The National Abstinence Clearinghouse Press Release; The Heritage Foundation]
CONTINUED GOOD NEWS ON TEEN PREGNANCY AND TEEN ABORTION. In a study released this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports record declines in the rates of teen pregnancies and abortions. The drop in teenage pregnancy rates continues a long trend: the decline of 38 percent is a fall from an all-time high in 1990 to an historic low in 2004. Significantly, the CDC, the nation’s largest public health agency, stated that their report is the most comprehensive study of this decade.
Teen pregnancies were only 12 percent of the total pregnancies in 2004, down from 15 percent in 1990.
Abortions were at a historical high in 1990 at 1.61 million, but had declined by 24 percent (1.22 million) by 2004. Another way of looking at the data is to note that among 15- to 44-year-old women, abortions per 1,000 women declined from 30 per thousand in 1990 to only 19.7 per thousand in 2004.
APR 15, 2008
The CDC has reported significant drops in teen pregnancies and abortions in the US since 1990 but in its latest report does not mention the powerful influence of abstinence education on the positive decisions of these young people. Abstinence proponents are noticing the omission and wondering if it is related to the upcoming congressional hearing chaired by Henry Waxman (D-CA), a noted abstinence opponent.
(Source: “Teen Pregnancy Report Ignores Abstinence Component,” CitizenLink.com, 04-15-08, http://www.citizenlink.org/CLBriefs/A000007131.cfm; NAC, 23Apr08)
Clearly, the only thing that has changed in the years under review is the increase in schools offering abstinence education. Contraception, especially the condom, is readily available, but that’s nothing new; that availability has remained constant during the period of the decline. Over the past decade, though, abstinence programs have become far more widespread. In addition, they have been increasingly more effective as more money has been available to test the programs and provide research about best practices in teaching abstinence. The programs focus on increasing teen self-esteem and teaching delayed gratification, how to say “no” effectively, how to resist peer pressure, and how to plan and achieve goals for the future. Such programs provide legitimate means of teen empowerment.
Further, teens have access now to all the technological evidence, via high definition sonograms, that the babe in the womb is really a pre-born child with fingernails and sucking a thumb. These views of the baby inside the womb are having a profound impact on the future generation of mothers and fathers; they understand the seriousness of abortion — that it truly does kill an infant.
Equally important, today’s teens have seen broken relationships up close and ugly; they’ve seen friends used and discarded. They want more; they want a future and hope for those things that now seem possible for everyone.
The culture is changing for the better.
Unsurprisingly, the battle is not over yet. The left is still behind the times and is still arguing the same old talking points. The Guttmacher Institute headed their press release about the decline in teen pregnancy and abortion with the improbable claim: Improved Contraceptive Use a Key Factor. We are supposed to believe that suddenly teens have become consistent and reliable about using a condom. In fact, an earlier analysis by Guttmacher reported that 86 percent of the decline in teen pregnancy between 1995 and 2002 was due to more teens using contraception and using it more effectively. Apparently unaware that they seemed to be trying to have it both ways, Guttmacher complained that “the proportion of U.S. teens receiving any formal instruction about birth control methods has declined sharply.” Most of their press release promoted the “need” for comprehensive sex education instead of abstinence programs for teens. Further, they cited the need for increased funding for comprehensive sex education and recommended cutting all funding for abstinence (e
ven though current funding shows an untenable disparity — $12 in comprehensive sex education funding for every $1 in abstinence education.) They want it all, even though their programs have proven ineffective.
There is still much to be done in changing attitudes and promoting the well-being of America’s young people, but teen sexual activity is down, teen pregnancies are down and teen abortions are down. That is great news from the cultural battle fields.
Over the past decade, we have offered our nation’s teens a bright future and expected the best from them. Not surprisingly, they have met the challenge and are seizing the opportunities to grasp all the possibilities available to their generation. Our national leadership needs to continue to keep faith with them by supporting abstinence education as clearly the best choice for their current and future well-being.
Janice Shaw Crouse, Ph.D., Senior Fellow at the Beverly LaHaye Institute, the think tank for Concerned Women for America, is a recognized authority on domestic issues, the United Nations, cultural and women’s concerns.
[17April08, Janice Shaw Crouse; NAC, 23Apr08, http://www.townhall.com/columnists/JaniceShawCrouse/2008/04/17/continued_good_news_on_teen_pregnancy_and_abortion]
HELPING TEENS FIND CHASTE SUPPORT — CHASED BUT CHASTE!
Check out facebook.com and join the NAC sponsored group, Truth 4 Youth. "Not only do we network abstinent teens together, but we post pictures and videos that help the youth know that they are not alone in their honorable decision to remain abstinent.
"The fact is that media is an effective outlet who’s popularity can only grow from here.
"Think of the students you work with who you encourage to practice abstinence. As wonderful as your personal support is to them, they, like normal teenagers, need to feel social acceptance as well. They can receive encouragement from their peers through online social networking websites such as the aforementioned. Its time we give the people what they need.
Abstinence is cool. STDs, teen pregnancies, and broken hearts aren’t. That’s the truth…. now lets make it known.
On another venue, for help vetting the movies, TV shows, and video games your kids want to see or play, check out these sites for reliable reviews: The Dove Foundation at http://www.dove.org/; Parents Television Council at http://www.parentstv.org/; and Plain Games at http://www.plaingames.com/. [Abstinence Clearinghouse]